Maybe the best part of my day (or almost) was seeing snow on Brown Mountain on the way to the start.
Also, nice to see several deer grazing the meadow around the start area.
The sun was out for the start and mostly the whole race. Better than the rain that had been expected.
I had been worried about the creek crossing at the beginning of the course. The water was cold and way up the thighs but didn’t really bother me. It felt pretty good. It might have even helped to ice the legs and feet before the ascent. Wussed out and took off my shoes, though. Left the socks on, though, if that’s any consolation.
The climb up was steep at times but mostly runable. Great reward at the top - The Pacific! Cold wind coming off the ocean changed the mood for a little while. Could barely open my rolled fruit snack because I couldn’t feel/move my hands.
Ran out of water just before midway aid station. And again just before finish. Brought a 24+ ounce bottle. Maybe should have brought two. More aid stations or even a water jug between them could help.
Stomach cramps weren’t an issue finally in a race situation. I often get them at these events. Don’t know why. Too nervous maybe or trying harder. Every time I thought I felt a cramp coming on I just focused on complete breathing and they went away. Also visualized taking the form of Totally 80’s with her 7-speed freewheel and downtube shifters – light, simple, free – I’m not sure how I came to this but I liked it.
At the highpoint of elevation the wind died and the sun felt nice on my cold hands. Also at that point I knew things were gong well. All downhill from there. Plus I was singing the Veggie Burrito song which means I had a little hunger and my body was happy. If I had been wrecked I wouldn’t have had the energy to think about burritos. It goes like this: veggie burrito, veggie burrito, veggie burrito…
The descent was a little tricky due to lots of sticky mud. And since I don’t snug up my laces there were several sections that nearly pulled off my shoes.
The last few miles I was jamming. I saw a sign indicating 3.2 miles to the campground (start/finish) so I just floored it. It was nice to have energy left in the tank.
2h55m at the finish. I was happy to break 3 hours. Very satisfied. Actually, surprised with my performance.
Malibu Creek is a beautiful park (especially at this time of year). Really cool rock formations surrounded by my favorite native plant friends.
Made it back home in time to pass out on the couch in front of the Paris-Nice cycling coverage.